Fravel: China’s Misunderstood Nuclear Expansion | 2023 | News

China’s Misunderstood Nuclear Expansion
How U.S. Strategy Is Fueling Beijing’s Growing Arsenal
Taylor Fravel, Henrik Stålhane Hiim, and Magnus Langset Trøan | Foreign Affairs
Chinese intercontinental ballistic missiles in Tiananmen Square

"Given Chinese and U.S. fears about each other’s nuclear programs, increased communication may help to break the spiral. Based on Chinese fears, the United States should understand how changes in its nuclear capabilities and doctrine play a critical role in shaping China’s threat perceptions and perceived force requirements. Going forward, China will continue to respond to U.S. advances that are viewed as weakening China’s nuclear deterrent. Similarly, Beijing should understand that the lack of transparency surrounding its rapid nuclear expansion has fueled worst-case assessments by the United States. Continued lack of transparency will lead to even greater U.S. suspicion—and feed an intensifying arms race between the two countries."

--SSP Director Taylor Fravel with Henrik Stålhane Hiim and Magnus Langset Trøan in Foreign Affairs